• Chadwicks & Washington Mills depots to be torn down ?

  • Discussion relating to the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western, the Erie, and the resulting 1960 merger creating the Erie Lackawanna. Visit the Erie Lackawanna Historical Society at http://www.erielackhs.org/.
Discussion relating to the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western, the Erie, and the resulting 1960 merger creating the Erie Lackawanna. Visit the Erie Lackawanna Historical Society at http://www.erielackhs.org/.

Moderator: blockline4180

  by Cactus Jack
The Utica, NY Observer Dispatch has the following article about the possibility of two ex- DL&W Utica Division depots to be potentially demolished. Both are just south of Utica.

The Washington Mills depot was moved years ago to a new location and was most likely built in the 1880's. The Chadwicks depot, built in 1905 is trackside with most of it's original interior intact.

Posted Mar 29, 2010 @ 11:56 PM
Last update Mar 30, 2010 @ 12:33 AM

The fate of three town-owned buildings may be decided by a new committee charged with examining their structural issues and determining whether they’re worth the cost of repairs.

At least one Town Board member wants to act to save the historic buildings before they fall further into disrepair. But Town Supervisor Patrick Tyksinski and others on the board say the town may not be able to afford to fix all three.

The buildings in question are:

* The Kellogg Road Community Center adjacent to the town Police Department.
* The James H. Donovan Community Center in Chadwicks.
* A building at the entrance of the Washington Mills Athletic Park used for storage of town records.

Of those, the record storage building is the only one currently in use. The Kellogg Road Community Center has been shuttered since 2008, and the Donovan Community Center was officially closed in March 2009.

Board member Don Backman said he would like to save the buildings, two of which are former railroad stations.

“We are the custodians of town property and buildings,” Backman said. “What are we doing? It’s just not good management to let them fall apart.”

But Tyksinski said the town’s fiscal troubles could make it hard to tackle the buildings’ issues anytime soon.

Under the administration of Tyksinski’s predecessor, Earle Reed, the town burned through all of the $2.8 million in its reserves, and town residents were socked with a 46 percent tax hike for 2010. Tyksinski has vowed to bring town finances back into line and has just tasked the Town Board with finding $1.3 million in budget cuts for next year.

“You’ve got to go through a ranking order and say, ‘Where are our priorities?’” Tyksinski said.

Board member Rich Woodland Jr. said he hopes local residents will let the town government know how they feel.

“I hope the citizens give us input,” he said.

About the buildings

Kellogg Road: Numerous local organizations and the Town Board all used to use this community center for meetings. But the building was closed in 2008 due to the cost of utilities.

A 2007 study by Alesia & Crewell Architects found the building to be “in generally good condition,” but also found a mold problem and water leaks. It also determined poor insulation was contributing to the high utility bills.

Backman has urged the town to reopen the building in summer months and is investigating whether BOCES students could do the repairs cheaply. Tyksinski, however, is considering tearing the building down or selling it to someone who would move it away for free.

Donovan Community Center: Restored in the 1980s with funds secured by the former state senator for whom it’s named, this former railroad station maintains its historic, wood-paneled interior and high ceilings.

“The interior and exterior are what they always have been,” said Barbara Couture of the New Hartford Historical Society. “It’s one of the few buildings in New Hartford that hasn’t been altered.”

Board member David Reynolds said he believed it would be “inappropriate to let anything happen” to the building. But Tyksinski said it seemed too far away to house any town offices, and he was open to selling it.

Records Center: The records center is a brick structure that Backman said was once a gas station.

Town Clerk Gail Young, who is in charge of town records storage, said the building is serving its purpose and the records are not in jeopardy.

But at least one leak has been patched in the past, and a walk around the exterior of the structure revealed signs of roof deterioration and cracked bricks. An adjacent yard was overgrown and contained two aging cars.

Board member Christine Krupa said this building’s problems are “the most pressing,” and Tyksinski agreed the building should be examined.

“We don’t want to wait until the roof collapses and then look at it,” he said.
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